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Recommend jazz book for the pop player


konaboy

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Hi

 

Might seem like a strange request... I'll try and explain.

 

After a few years I've pretty much made it through to the end of the Jazz Piano Book my Mark Levine. This is a really great book and I have learned a lot. I started with zero jazz knowledge and the book basically taught me enough knowledge to be able to meaningfully participate in a jazz jam sessions.

 

Now I want to start working through another book.

 

I would prefer something more oriented towards the pop/rock/blues/funk/soul player instead of pure jazz. Whilst I enjoyed the Levine book I felt that some of the scales, chords & voicings are too obscure and irrelevant since I mainly play soul, funk and blues.

 

Do you catch my drift? Any recommendations?

hang out with me at woody piano shack
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You made it through the Jazz Piano Book in a few years. I am about half way through after about 4 years. I have to take it in spurts or I become overwhelmed. I also like to put what I learn into practice and I want to master it before I move on. It might be the wrong approach.

 

As soul, blues, funk, R&B player I find just transcribing from Cd's works well. Are you playing in a band? If so go back an listen to the original recordings of the songs your playing. Most people play soul music and funk too fast and with way to much going on.

Jimmy

 

Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others. Groucho

NEW BAND CHECK THEM OUT

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I also like to put what I learn into practice and I want to master it before I move on. It might be the wrong approach.
Jim,

 

You're doing it exactly right. (Berklee even encourages this method.) You learn as many new concepts as you can handle, and then spend time actually applying those new techniques beofre moving on. We each learn at our own pace. It's not a competition.

 

Whenever I absorb a new concept, I apply it by playing it in different keys, using it on assorted tunes in the Real Book, and when I've got it down fast enough, start using it when playing live.

 

I think you're approaching it just fine...

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Originally posted by cnegrad:

Isn't there a George Duke instructional video? He usually plays in all the genres you specify. Ah, here you go:

 

Click Here

It's good, but it's standard jazz piano, and nothing you won't have already learnt from Levine's book. Maybe worth a watch to see how he develops his interpretation of a standard, but there's no funk to be had.

 

Levine has a pop piano book which covers all the styles you mention and if you enjoyed his jazz book it's probably worth chasing up - in print, should be easy enough to find.

Gig keys: Hammond SKpro, Korg Vox Continental, Crumar Mojo 61, Crumar Mojo Pedals

 

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Originally posted by BluesKeys:

 

As soul, blues, funk, R&B player I find just transcribing from Cd's works well. Are you playing in a band? If so go back an listen to the original recordings of the songs your playing. Most people play soul music and funk too fast and with way to much going on.

That fact is true. when our band compares our work to the originals we always look at each other and say."Boy, that is slower than I thought" And its amazing what the right tempo does for the groove. I also find out after finding or making transcriptions that there is less activity going on. It just sounds like more. And its a good lesson to learn, about trying to do to much. Its better to be solid in the groove with less playing.
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If Levine has a pop piano book there is no finding it anywhere when doing a search on major book sites. The only thing close is a not-for-beginners-book of the same title by Mark Harrison that looks pretty good. Click the link.

 

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0793598788/qid=1140448104/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-5833433-7991255?s=books&v=glance&n=283155

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Originally posted by B.T.:

If Levine has a pop piano book there is no finding it anywhere when doing a search on major book sites. The only thing close is a not-for-beginners-book of the same title by Mark Harrison that looks pretty good. Click the link.

 

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0793598788/qid=1140448104/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-5833433-7991255?s=books&v=glance&n=283155

:thu:

 

You knew what I meant.

 

Harrison also has a Gospel piano book. His style is pretty dry and he doesn't quite lead you along the way Levine does, but there's plenty of food for thought.

 

As far as funk goes, yeh, DIY transcriptions are it really. George Duke, Herbie Hancock, Bernie Worrell and the guys with P-Funk, John Medeski, Stevie Wonder. I've made myself a CD of tracks that feature clav and am working through them. Clav is more rhythm than anything so doing it aurally is definitely the way to go. Harmonically it's pretty simple. There is a section on funk in Harrison's Pop Piano book. It's ok, but listening and working our stuff for yourself is way better.

Gig keys: Hammond SKpro, Korg Vox Continental, Crumar Mojo 61, Crumar Mojo Pedals

 

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Thanks everyone. I'll definitely check out the Pop Piano Book, thanks for the tip.

 

I have to confess that some of the Jazz Piano Book chapters I only skimmed through. I played some of the examples and thought that it wasn't interesting for me. Some of the stuff on upper structures and block chords were just too altered and obscure. Same thing applied to a lot of the minor and diminished chord/scale theory I just can't see myself applying that in my jamming just now. Also I found it very difficult to play the examples in the Latin & Salsa chapters without first hearing how to rhythms should sound.

 

I thought I would study some lighter subjects in another book and come back to those chapters I skipped at a later date.

 

Yes, I agree that listening and trying to repeat what you are hearing is great for developing technique and ideas. It is helpful to understand the theory behind it as well.

hang out with me at woody piano shack
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